Wednesday, May 31, 2006


I was thinking today about people that I know to see but that I've never met. Nineteen years ago, I started my first library job (shelver/desk assistant) at a Catholic college library. Today a guy passed by the Information Desk that I recognize as someone who used to study/hang out at that library of long ago.

I have checked books out to him. We have studied at tables in the same big quiet library. I never really spoke to him but someone said that he was becoming a monk. Who knows whether he did or not. He's been in my life for a long time, in an odd way.

For nineteen years I have not known that guy.

Friday, May 26, 2006


Just glanced at the new issue of The Advocate magazine, a magazine for gay and lesbian people. The cover feature is an article about gay polygamy, or gay men with multiple partners.

But wait! Doesn't 'polygamy' mean multiple wives, and doesn't 'polyandry' mean multiple husbands? Shouldn't it be gay polyandry?

Damn. Shot down by the Oxford Concise. 'Polygamy' can mean multiple mates. This just seems sloppy to me, when there is a more concise term available.

Or, maybe it's fitting that there are multiple terms for the concept of having multiple partners. Sort of like self-reflective literature, or whatever they call that.

Aren't I so clever today. Or perhaps I just don't feel like doing my very exciting database evaluation report.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Better Book Titles Through Deafness

Okay, so Lauveen said, "How about this book title... Hermaphrodeities."

And I heard, "Math for Deities."

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Squirrel Narrowly Escapes the Conflagration

Okay, maybe not a fire. Just a fire drill in the library.

Fire drills happen about once a year here, and they've started this smart thing where they tell us beforehand when it is going to happen so that we can practice. 'But that's cheating!', you might say. I thought so too, until I started to think about it like how we practice CPR in the event of an emergency.

They tell us there's a fire drill coming and we all study our action plan for disaster. Every time we do it we get better at it, and every time we do it we poke holes in the plan and then figure out better ways to do it. It's working for me.

And today it went pretty well. I didn't have to fight with any Internet patrons who might refuse to leave their terminal. It was all right. Especially on a very sunny Spring day where we have to stand outside for 10 minutes while they do their final checking.


I am just not blogging much these days. I know you know, but somehow I have to say it out loud (in print).

This very tidy little question the other day on the reference desk:

"I'm trying to find out the volume of a barrel of oil." And there it was tucked away in the Science and Technology Desk Reference, and I found the answer in under 60 seconds. Those are the questions that make you feel like you have your finger on the pulse of the world's information.

Hubris, anyone?

Saturday, May 13, 2006


Flotsam overheard at a recent library conference:

"Librarians have tighter buns."

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

State of Flux

It is a happy time at squirrel central, but a time of change as well. My sister has joined the nest after her long journey across Canada, and there is much rejoicing. But - quelle surprise! - she has brought all her stuff!! Somehow I knew that she owned clothing, dishes, furniture, but it never occurred to me that we would have to figure out how to integrate it into our existing mountain of possessions when she moved in.

Beans and Jim did a great job while I was at the conference minimizing the effect on the main living space, but there are many tiny bits of tweaking to be done.

We are all going to sit down, too, and decide whether now is really the optimal time to build a workshop in the backyard. We will likely go ahead with the project, but it is always good to have solid consensus before you dive in and start things rolling.

Beans talked us into adding a shower ring above our clawfoot tub, so she can have showers, and that apparatus has appeared over the weekend too. All it needs now is a couple of shower curtains. I am trepidacious about the effect of a shower on the window next to the tub, but I am hopeful that three clever squirrels can put their nut-brains together to figure it out.

Sprout has a single eczema bump on his head, which hasn't happened at all for almost a year, and yet again the 'mook' cure is doing the trick. There was just an article in a recent issue of Mothering magazine about alternate health uses of breastmilk, and it didn't specifically say 'minimize or eliminate eczema' but it had suggestions along the same lines.

I have post-conference-desk going on all around me at work - piles of promotional crap and good ideas all mixed up with the things that I'm catching up on because I was gone for a few days. But, ahhh, the conference was good. Good ideas, inspirational sessions, good networking chats, and even a bit of dancing!

Squirrels LOVE dancing.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Cold Slaw

Tomorrow I'm off to the snippy snappy Saskatchewan Library Association conference, a.k.a. SLA, or as Lauveen likes to say 'cold slaw'. Whoo hoo, conference.

You Holl!

Auntie Beans is on the road home, U-haul in tow. She calls us every night to update us on her progress. Sounds like it's more fun than could usually be expected, since she and her travelling companion always seem to be calling us from some bar along the highway at midnight. Bon voyage, Tante Haricot.

Squirrel Charm

It is the unusual attributes of squirrels that make them most endearing.

Yesterday I bested my own personal record time for getting covered in my supper. Sprout and I were at the Broadway Cafe for supper, and the server set down his hamburger and my hot turkey sandwich. Within 60 seconds, I had gravy all over the chest of my shirt and on the cuff, from lunging across to assist the small boy with his big burger. Chawaming.

And this week, I have managed to get my Mother in Law's Tongue houseplant to flower. Since when does Mother in Law's Tongue flower?!? I have left the repotting of the plant so long that it's on its last legs: 'Can't... make it.. much longer... Must... re-..produce...' I didn't notice the flower at first, but kept smelling a sickeningly sweet scent near the front entrance. 'Mold?', I thought. 'Something rotten in Sprout's backpack?' No, just the do-it-yourself funeral wreath of yet another doomed houseplant.

Jim says that from a suitable distance - like that of a working colleague - I appear to be the most conscientious, together person. But then if you look closer there's food-encrusted blouses and botani-cide. Which is the real squirrel?

Chip chrrrr. I'm not telling.